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Lecture: "13. The Prince and the Palace: Human Made Divine on the Palatine Hill"Add to Queue

Course :  YaleCourses Roman Architecture (HSAR 252)

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  • Date posted : Jan 01, 1970

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Professor Diana Kleiner investigates the major architectural commissions of the emperor Domitian, the last Flavian emperor. She begins with the Arch of Titus, erected after Titus' death by his brother Domitian on land previously occupied by Nero's Domus Transitoria. The Arch celebrated Titus' greatest accomplishment--the Flavian victory in the Jewish Wars--and may have served as Titus' tomb. Professor Kleiner also discusses the Stadium of Domitian, the shape of which is preserved in Rome's Piazza Navona. Her major focus is the vast Imperial Palace on the Palatine Hill designed by the architect Rabirius and featuring Domitian as dominus et deus (lord and god). Constructed from brick-faced concrete and revetted with multicolored imported marbles, this structure was divided into public and private wings, and was so magnificent that it served as the urban residence of all subsequent Roman emperors. The lecture concludes with the so-called Forum Transitorium, a narrow forum begun by Domitian and finished by his successor Nerva, which features a temple to Domitian's patron goddess Minerva and a series of decorative columnar bays that create a lively in-and-out undulation that heralds the beginning of a "baroque" phase in Roman architecture.

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